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Our History Curriculum

Article 17: Every child has the right to reliable information.

Our goal is for our children to become historians. Historians must have:  

   

Fundamental Foundations

We believe that for children to secure greater depth, it is important that they first have solid fundamental foundations.  Fundamental foundations should not be rushed and so the notion of ‘rapid progress’ must be dismissed. Instead the goal of repetition should be seen as both useful and necessary. This is why you will see us returning regularly to science knowledge and concepts.  

Cognitive Domains – Degrees of Understanding  

We refer to three degrees of understanding and thinking ‘Basic’, ‘Advancing’ and ‘Deep’.  

BASIC – Low level cognitive demand. Involves acquisition of fundamental foundations.  

ADVANCING – Higher level cognitive demands beyond recall. Requires application involving some degree of decision making in how to apply fundamental foundations.  

DEEP – Cognitive demand involves non-standard, non-routine, inter-connected, multi-step thinking in problems with more than one possible solution.  Requires reasoning and justification for the inventive application of fundamental foundations. 

Time scales for progression through the cognitive domains 

Time Scales for Progression Through the Cognitive Domains

Milestone 1 – Y1 & Y2 

Milestone 2 – Y3 & Y4 

Milestone 3 – Y5 & Y6  

Each milestone should be seen as containing two phases. In the first phase, pupils should repeat the content a sufficient number of times to secure fundamental foundations; in the second phase, they should apply the foundations in order to reach the ‘expected’ standard. If they reach this before the end of the second phase, they should move on to tasks that will secure greater depth. Thus, progress through the cognitive domains take two years.  

It is expected that by the end of Year 1, pupils should be able to complete the BASIC tasks to secure fundamental foundations and by the end of Year 2, the ADVANCING tasks. It is also reasonable that a number of children may move on to the DEEP activities if they secure an early understanding of advancing.  

Milestone 1 

Y1 & Y2 

Milestone 2 

Y3 & Y4

Milestone 3

Y5 & Y6

Beginning 

Y1 

Advancing 

Y2 

Deep 

Y2

Beginning 

Y3 

Advancing 

Y4

Deep 

Y4

Beginning 

Y5

Advancing 

Y6 

Deep 

Y6

Page 144 of the Primary National Curriculum 2014 states: 

‘While it is important that pupils make progress, it is also vitally important that they develop secure understanding of each key block of knowledge and concepts in order to progress to the next stage. Insecure, superficial understanding will not allow genuine progress: pupils may struggle at key points of transition (such as between primary and secondary school), build up serious misconceptions, and/or have significant difficulties in understanding higher-order content.’ 

We believe that it is therefore extremely important to secure the fundamental foundations before trying to secure greater depth.  

Curriculum Breadth, Depth &  Progression Principles 

We have carefully planned our curriculum to ensure progression as well as breadth and depth.  These are the principles we have adhered to: 

Curriculum Content 

Breadth of study 

Key Stage 1

Key Stage 2 

  • The lives of significant individuals in Britain’s past who have contributed to our nation’s achievements - scientists such as Isaac Newton or Michael Faraday, reformers such as Elizabeth Fry or William Wilberforce, medical pioneers such as William Harvey or Florence Nightingale, or creative geniuses such as Isambard Kingdom Brunel or Christina Rossetti.

 

  • Key events in the past that are significant nationally and globally, particularly those that coincide with festivals or other events that are commemorated throughout the year.

 

  • Significant historical events, people and places in their own locality. 
  • Changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age.

 

  • The Roman Empire and its Impact on Britain.

 

  • Britain’s settlement by Anglo Saxons and Scots.

 

  • The Viking and Anglo Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England.

 

  • A local history study (World War II in Bethnal Green).

 

  • A study of a theme in British history (exploration).

 

  • Early Civilizations achievements and an in-depth study of one of the following: Ancient Egypt or Ancient Greece.

 

  • A non-European society that contrasts with British history chosen from: Mayan Civilization.

Building a History Schema at Globe 

Our pupils will form a history schema* by using concepts as the basis for schema. We call these threshold concepts; these are the big ideas which form the basis for the subject schema. We will continually revisit these concepts throughout the entire curriculum, in every year group, in every history topic. In history the threshold concepts are:

We strengthen the schema with knowledge. The knowledge comes from our topics. Within each topic are knowledge categories, the facets of each threshold concept that helps to strengthen the schema. The history knowledge categories are artefacts, location, beliefs, settlements, culture & pastimes, food & farming, travel & exploration, society, conflict and main events. We further deep connections through tasks. This is what is developed through our planning.  

*Schema – A subject schema is a way of organising knowledge in a meaningful way; it is an appreciation of how facts are connected and the ways in which they are connected. A schema is distinct from information, which is just isolated facts that have no organisational basis or links.  

Threshold Concepts broken into Milestones - Progression through Key Stages

At Globe we teach these four threshold concepts throughout KS1 and KS2. These are the big ideas that underpin the subject. The four threshold concepts are:  

This concept involves understanding that our understanding of the past comes from an interpretation of the available evidence. 

This concept involves an appreciation of the characteristic features of the past and an understanding that life is different for different sections of society. 

This concept involves an understanding of how to chart the passing of time and how some aspects of history studied were happening at similar times in different places.  

This concept involves using historical vocabulary and techniques to convey information about the past. 

 Threshold Concept

Milestone 1 

Milestone 2 

Milestone 3 

Investigate and interpret the past

This concept involves understanding that our understanding of the past comes from an interpretation of the available evidence.

• Observe or handle evidence to ask questions and find answers to questions about the past. 

• Ask questions such as: What was it like for people? What happened? How long ago? 

• Use artefacts, pictures, stories, online sources and databases to find out about the past. 

• Identify some of the different ways the past has been represented. 

 

• Use evidence to ask questions and find answers to questions about the past. 

• Suggest suitable sources of evidence for historical enquiries. 

• Use more than one source of evidence for historical enquiry in order to gain a more accurate understanding of history. 

• Describe different accounts of a historical event, explaining some of the reasons why the accounts may differ. 

• Suggest causes and consequences of some of the main events and changes in history. 

• Use sources of evidence to deduce information about the past. 

• Select suitable sources of evidence, giving reasons for choices. 

• Use sources of information to form testable hypotheses about the past. 

• Seek out and analyse a wide range of evidence in order to justify claims about the past. 

• Show an awareness of the concept of propaganda and how historians must understand the social context of evidence studied. 

• Understand that no single source of evidence gives the full answer to questions about the past. 

• Refine lines of enquiry as appropriate.

Build an overview of world history

This concept involves an appreciation of the characteristic features of the past and an understanding that life is different for different section.

• Describe historical events. 

• Describe significant people from the past. 

• Recognise that there are reasons why people in the past acted as they did. 

• Describe changes that have happened in the locality of the school throughout history. 

• Give a broad overview of life in Britain from ancient until medieval times. 

• Compare some of the times studied with those of other areas of interest around the world. 

• Describe the social, ethnic, cultural or religious diversity of past society. 

• Describe the characteristic features of the past, including ideas, beliefs, attitudes and experiences of men, women and children. 

• Identify continuity and change in the history of the locality of the school. 

• Give a broad overview of life in Britain from medieval until the Tudor and Stuarts times. 

• Compare some of the times studied with those of other areas of interest around the world.  

• Describe the social, ethnic, cultural or religious diversity of past society. 

• Describe the characteristic features of the past, including ideas, beliefs, attitudes and experiences of men, women and children.

Understand chronology

This concept involves an understanding of how to chart the passing of time and how some aspects of history studied were happening at similar times in different. 

• Place events and artefacts in order on a time line. 

• Label time lines with words or phrases such as: past, present, older and newer. 

• Recount changes that have occurred in their own lives. 

• Use dates where appropriate. 

 

• Place events, artefacts and historical figures on a time line using dates. 

• Understand the concept of change over time, representing this, along with evidence, on a time line. 

• Use dates and terms to describe events. 

• Describe the main changes in a period of history (using terms such as: social, religious, political, technological and cultural). 

• Identify periods of rapid change in history and contrast them with times of relatively little change. 

• Understand the concepts of continuity and change over time, representing them, along with evidence, on a time line. 

• Use dates and terms accurately in describing events. 

Communicate historically 

This concept involves using historical vocabulary and techniques to convey information about the past. 

• Use words and phrases such as: a long time ago, recently, when my parents/carers were children, years, decades and centuries to describe the passing of time. 

• Show an understanding of the concept of nation and a nation’s history. 

• Show an understanding of concepts such as civilisation, monarchy, parliament, democracy, and war and peace. 

• Use appropriate historical vocabulary to communicate, including:  

    • dates  

    • time period  

    • era  

    • change  

    • chronology. 

• Use literacy, numeracy and computing skills to a good standard in order to communicate information about the past. 

• Use appropriate historical vocabulary to communicate, including:  

    • dates  

    • time period  

    • era  

    • chronology  

    • continuity  

    • change  

    • century  

    • decade  

    • legacy. 

• Use literacy, numeracy and computing skills to a exceptional standard in order to communicate information about the past. 

• Use original ways to present information and ideas. 

Curriculum Breadth Maps (topics) - Intent

Milestone 1 Curriculum Map

Milestone 2 Curriculum Map

Milestone 3 Curriculum Map

How we Implement our Curriculum

Our History Policy

Example history lesson - Milestone 1

Example history lesson - Milestone 2

Example history lesson - Milestone 3

Our Special Educational Needs History Curriculum 

SEND Curriculum Intent  

The SEND curriculum at Globe will be used for children who are working well below the age-related expectations, where differentiation within the overall curriculum isn’t possible. Possible reasons are: the work is too complex or the progression through the lessons stops the child from being able to remember what they have been taught effectively. 

The SEND Curriculum aims to support and develop the children’s executive functioning skills so that they are able to store learned information and put it to use (working memory), leading to successful learning.  Children will be able to follow instructions, manage tasks and remain focused throughout the lesson.  Whereby in the main lessons the children may lose concentration because the demands are too high e.g. pace, language, too many instructions to follow at one time.  The SEND curriculum aims to ensure that children with differences are able to learn about a subject, remain focused, manage and complete tasks with a sense of achievement, whilst also being challenged.   

This curriculum has been implemented in history, geography, and science – the three most academic subjects of our curriculum.  

It is implemented by… 

  1.       More repetition of learning focuses to help embed the knowledge (to help the children to remember the knowledge). Repetition to take the form of retrieval tasks and learning the same information in different ways over several lessons. The plenary for each lesson is to return to the year-long mind map to add vocabulary and key ideas, which helps contextualise information into a meaningful schema for the children. 
  1.      One knowledge category focus per term on two historical/geographical/science units. This allows depth of understanding of knowledge category. 
  1.       A range of knowledge categories over the course of the 6 years to support breadth of understanding over the course of the curriculum. 
  1.       A wider range of practical activities in the SEND curriculum. A process of input, reading/writing task, practical activity (e.g. poster, piece of art work), verbal presentation of information. Verbal presentation of the work (for example to a member of staff or other children) is to support the embedding of knowledge, to support SAL skills and to celebrate the development of the child. 
  2.       Reading differentiated to support lower-level readers. 

History SEND Curriuclum Breadth Maps (topics) - Intent

SEND  History Milestone 1 Curriculum Map

SEND  History Milestone 2 Curriculum Map

SEND  History Milestone 3 Curriculum Map